description of PH-971 by Clyfford Still

This vast oil painting by Clyfford Still measures nine and a half feet high by more than twelve feet wide. It plunges the viewer into a vast, radiant field of yellow and gold, animated by the motion of brushwork within, that drenches the canvas from top to bottom for most of its breadth. There are two exceptions: in the upper left corner, jagged curtains of black and crimson descend on the yellow, making knife-like incursions into the radiant field as they move downward and closer to the center. And about a foot before the right edge of the painting, the continuous yellow and gold expanse gives way to a tall band of white, unprimed canvas, leaving only two small flame-like peaks near the lower right corner and, above them, an irregularly shaped royal blue life-form that climbs through the white breach to the canvas’s edge.

Clyfford Still, PH-971, 1957
Clyfford Still, PH-971, 1957; oil on canvas, 113 1/4 in. x 148 in. x 2 1/4 in. (287.66 cm x 375.92 cm x 5.72 cm); Collection SFMOMA, Gift of the artist; © City & County of Denver, Courtesy Clyfford Still Museum / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Artwork Info

Artwork title
PH-971
Artist name
Clyfford Still
Date created
1957
Classification
painting
Medium
oil on canvas
Dimensions
113 1/4 in. x 148 in. x 2 1/4 in. (287.66 cm x 375.92 cm x 5.72 cm)
Date acquired
1975
Credit
Collection SFMOMA
Gift of the artist
Copyright
© City & County of Denver, Courtesy Clyfford Still Museum / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York
Permanent URL
https://www.sfmoma.org/artwork/75.35
Artwork status
Not on view at this time.

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